Wednesday, July 23, 2008

All they will call you will be deportees

OTAY MESA, CA - Along the Mexican border between San Diego and Tijuana is the biggest cluster of truck yards I've ever seen, all filled to capacity, all bustling day and night with international traffic, truck wheels kicking up gravel and dust that sticks to my skin and won't scrub off. American truck companies come to border towns to drop off goods going south, and the trailers are picked up by muddy cab-over trucks heading to Mexico. And the other way around.

Less than a mile away from the border, in this beautiful, bilingual, fair-weather place, I can almost believe that maybe that line separating the two countries really is imaginary. To the north, the hills of San Diego twinkle with lights in the night. To the south, Tijuana looks the same. One could confuse the two, if not for the gigantic omnipresent signs directing traffic to border crossings. The line just seems so arbitrary, like it was penciled in and everyone forgot they could erase it at any time.

About a hundred miles west of here, over the mountains and through the sand dunes, I-8 snakes next to the border. To the south of the highway, sand-blasted and chained barricades tell you just where the line lies. And again, you'd never know. It's all desert and wasteland as far as the eye can see, in either direction.


gontime said...

My wife and I have been following your blog for quite a while. I am often humored at the numerous cliche's you fit in. I've never felt the need to comment until your last post. It reminds me of the song that Reba sang from the perspective of a mexican looking over the Rio Grande toward America and saying, "Truly, God must live over on the other side". We are very fortunate indeed to be on this side of the "imaginary line" and I am thankful for those who died in the past to give us that line and the men and woman who try to protect it today!

gontime said...

Mexico has been a nation longer then us, has all the natural resources we do yet a corrupt government and compliant people allow themselves to live in poverty. Oh for the day when Mexicans stand up for themselves and establish a government as great as our forefathers did. May we do a better job of protecting our "imaginary line" from the drug lords and gangs who cross at will!

Lindsay said...

Many thanks, Gypsy, for your eloquence and lovely, lonely road imagery. It as been a pleasure reading of your travels, and wherever you are, and whatever journey you undertake next, I hope the road is kind to you.